The number of channels that PC tachistoscopes can have has increased recently (Bokhorst, 1995; Myors, 1998); however, neither the quality of display nor speed of image switching has been improved. This article shows the capability of VESA's VBE 3.0 standard (1998) for increasing the number of channels of high-quality images. And the refresh rate can be set to the fastest cathode ray tube (CRT) scanning rate the monitor can tolerate in order to reduce the timing delay of changing display. A PCTSCOPE library was written in C to provide these capabilities, which is compatible with conventional DOS real mode. The PC tachistoscope can have numbers of channels with various resolutions and colors and different refresh rates. For example, 25 images with the resolution of 640 x 480 pixels and 256 colors can be loaded to video memory, and vertical refresh rate can be set to 180 Hz. It takes less than 6 msec to change the display among 25 channels in synchronizing with the start of the video scanning frame. In this library, the number of channels, the resolution of the images, and the speed of changing display all are improved. The multichannel PC tachistoscope with this technique is especially suitable for research requiring high-quality images and rapid successive presentation of stimuli.
Behavior Research Methods, Instruments & Computers,33,524-531